Thursday, February 23, 2012

Stripes, Cubes and Cuffs

Turquoise Blue Cube Beads

As I move through the ‘old’ beads that I’ve selected for this year’s destash challenge, I find I’m a little embarrassed about the length of time some of these beads have spent hiding in my stash. They’ve just always been there, and it never occurred to me that they might be taking up space, until I actually considered how long ago it was that I purchased them.

One of the most troublesome examples is a handful of 1.5 mm cube bead packets. I purchased two or three each in white, turquoise and blue during one of my very first online shopping trips. It was a dollar sale, and I thought these tiny cubes looked so interesting that I snapped up a bunch at random. Apart from a few white cubes that ended up in a bead soup, I’ve never even used these cubes for a serious project. I experimented a little with square stitch, and then forgot all about them.

So far each project I’ve tackled with the my forgotten beads has been unexpectedly exciting, and this time was no different. I started with the turquoise cubes, and had so much fun with the first project, that I kept going and made two more similar pieces with white and blue.

Herringbone Stripe Cuffs

Because very few of the little cubes have clean edges, I’ve always been wary of weaving with them - I’ve been terrified of broken threads ever since trying to weave with cheap bugles. So I considered what techniques would look good with the cubes and fit into my current style, as well as provide secure beadwork. Herringbone weave seemed like a good solution, because each pair of cube beads would get multiple thread passes naturally, and leaving extra long tail threads would allow for some extra reinforcement at the end.

I paired the turquoise cubes with black and dark beige, and worked out a simple repeating pattern of stripes. It turned out so well, that I did the same again with white, altering the pattern a little, and making a narrower band, since there were fewer white cubes to work with. At last, it was time to use the blue cubes, and I paired them with chartreuse and peridot green, plus a very dark shade of transparent rootbeer.

Even though the cuffs are essentially the same, the different color combinations make them very separate from each other. I can’t decide which one I like best!

Copyright 2012 Inspirational Beading
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  1. I love how a different color combination can completely change the look of a design. Both of your bracelets are beautiful.

  2. Would hate to admit how long some of my beads have been waiting for me to use them - some so long I can't even remember! Your bracelets are amazing - each with such a different feel to them.

  3. It is really interesting how much color can do for the same design. I really love all of the bracelets you made, especially the one with the turquoise, black and beige beads :)


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